By all accounts, the short film market is bigger than ever before. Everyone seems to be busy either making shorts, watching them orin the case of streaming platforms, voraciously seeking them out to fill their content libraries. Film festivals too play a key role in helping short films find an audience. Platforms like ShortFilmDepot and FilmFreeway help you navigate the festival landscape (the latter even lets you create a password-protected link to your films for free, unlike the popular Vimeo, which charges after a certain data limit.)

But even with the proliferation of creators and platforms that host short films, the same key questions continue to crop up – How do I finance my short film? Now that it’s completed, how do I get it distributed? How do I find the audience for it?

Here’s a list of the key platforms that can help:

1) ShortsTV

According to their website, ShortsTV claims to have the world’s largest catalogue of short films and operates the only 24/7 HD TV channel dedicated to shorts. In India, ShortsTV is currently available on Tata Sky and their mobile app.

What Do They Offer?

If selected, they will purchase your short and offer a 3-year deal with non-exclusive rights (the rare platform to do so) so you’re free to post your film on other platforms as well. Depending on the quality of the film and suitability for international audiences, they may also show it on their overseas channels.

What Are They Looking For?

While ShortsTV doesn’t have any restrictions on genre or duration, they are subject to TV censor laws and therefore can’t accept any films with graphic content. Beyond that, the platform’s VP, Content Acquisition in India, filmmaker  Chintan Sarda says it’s entirely based on the content, though they are currently on the lookout for more comedies.

How Do I Get In touch?

Submissions can be made at https://shorts.tv/in-en/film-submissions

2) HumaraMovie

One of the most popular producer and distributors of Indians shorts, HumaraMovie releases a new short film every week on their 777k-subscriber strong YouTube channel.

What Do They Offer?

While they largely produce, they also distribute shorts so you can submit both scripts and finished films. On either front, they require exclusive digital rights of the film with a 50/50 revenue share model with creators. The only restriction is the film shouldn’t be available on YouTube.

In terms of producing shorts, the platform’s Associate Producer Abhishek Gautam says they require finished scripts or a detailed story – a brief synopsis won’t do. They have an internal team of DOPs and editors but if creators have their own crew you’re free to use them though HumaraMovie will not pay the team. They will cover all basic production and equipment costs and enable you to make your film.

What Are They Looking For?

They’re ideally looking for shorts with a duration of 10-15 mins but are also open to 20-30 mins at the most if the story demands it. They’re open to any genre though Gautam stresses that every film doesn’t need a social message which he sees all too often.

How Do I Get In Touch?

You can submit your scripts or films to [email protected] or [email protected]

3) Terribly Tiny Tales

Terribly Tiny Talkies is the platform behind a number of award-winning shorts such as Jackie Shroff-starrer Khujli and Anupam Kher-starrer Kheer, both of which have over 4 million views on YouTube.

What Do They Offer?

Like HumaraMovie, TTT is a studio and YouTube channel that produces and distributes shorts for their 310k YouTube subscriber-base and million-plus followers on Facebook. While they have a larger focus on production and are seeking scripts and stories, they are open to distributing finished films. In either case, when submitting they ask creators to provide as much information as possible about the film and the background of the filmmaker.

The film can’t be publicly available anywhere as they require exclusive digital rights. On the production front, like HumaraMovie, TTT will cover production costs and help in putting together a team if required.

What Are They Looking For?

Submitted films need to have a duration of under 15 minutes. TTT are open to all kinds of stories and genres though they do have a focus on films set around red-letter days like Mother’s Day, Valentine’s Day and so on.

How Do I Get In Touch?

Submit your film or story to [email protected]

4) The Short Cuts by KARA Studios

YouTube channel The Short Cuts has close to 100 shorts, more than 40 of which have over a million views.

What Do They Offer?

For their 900k subscriber base, KARA Studios both distributes and produces shorts. In terms of acquiring finished films, if selected, depending on your film’s budget they’ll either make an offer based on your production costs or enter into a revenue share agreement. Like most platforms, they require exclusive digital rights, so ideally your film shouldn’t be on YouTube. If it is, you’ll have to take it down and re-upload it onto their channel.

What Are They Looking For?

Founder Karan Murarka says they’re ideally looking for a duration of 10-20 minutes but are open to films with shorter duration depending on the content. He stresses that he’s always on the lookout for ‘suspense-driven’ shorts which hinge on a big twist as well as those pegged around red-letter days like International Women’s Day, Christmas, Halloween etc

How Do I Get In Touch?

You can send in your films or scripts to [email protected] and [email protected]

5) Aabobo

Co-founded by one of India’s most celebrated short filmmakers Devashish Makhija and actor Vaibhav Raj Gupta, Aabobo is a Mumbai-based film club with a twist. Aside from screening shorts, documentaries and features, they aim to develop a community of independent filmmakers, film lovers and artists and have them come together to discuss, debate and support each other’s work.

What Do They Offer?

Makhija and his team watch and curate films for their screenings. The young platform has conducted 4 events and screenings so far. All screenings are followed by a discussion between the filmmakers and audience. Makhija stresses that Aabobo is entirely non-transactional and all their screenings are free to attend.

What Are They Looking For?

Makhija says they are open to all kinds of shorts, but ideally they look for those which aren’t already on existing large platforms that have already found an audience. His only other condition is that he insists at least 8-10 people from the film’s cast and crew must be present to represent and discuss the film.

How Do I Get In Touch?

You can contact them and send your films to the Aabobo Facebook page.

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6) Shorted

At less than a year old, Shorted is one of the most interesting platforms out there. More a curator than distributor, Shorted hosts selected films on their website and assigns them a rating out of 10. with separate sections for various genres and film festivals like the Jio MAMI Mumbai Film Festival.

What Do They Offer?

If selected, they don’t require exclusive rights to your film – but just link to it so that they can promote it to their website audiences, though the size of that audience is unknown. So it doesn’t matter if your film is already on YouTube or if it sits on any other platform. The site charges Rs 500 per submission to cover admin costs, but the amount will be refunded if your film isn’t selected. The platform also hopes to serve as an IMDB of shorts, allowing you to see the cast and crew details which is useful for those looking for filmmaking talent.

What Are They Looking For?

Shorts under 30 mins across all genres.

How Do I Get In Touch?

You can submit your film here: https://shorted.in/submit/

7) CineShorts India

Founded in January of this year, Mumbai-based Cineshorts India is the rare film club dedicated to screening Indian shorts. Based out of The Castiko Space in Versova, Mumbai, they’ve conducted close to 10 screenings so far.

What Do They Offer?

Founder Saif Hyder says they aim to screen a package of 4-6 shorts at a time, followed by a Q & A with the audience and filmmakers. Depending on the content, films can even be picked up for multiple screenings.

What Are They Looking For?

There’s no restriction on whether the films are available online, their duration or genre, they just have to be Indian shorts.

How do I get in touch?

You can email them at [email protected] or reach them on Facebook @thecineshorts or Instagram @cineshortsindia

8) White Wall Screenings

Another Mumbai-based short film club, White Wall Screenings conducts screenings out of Khar’s Habitat centre. Outside of Indian and international shorts they’ve also hosted a number of masterclasses with filmmakers like Shyam Benegal.

What Do They Offer?

Co-founder Pratik Rajen Kothari says that most of the shorts they’ve screened thus far have been curated but they are always open to submissions. Like Cineshorts India, all screenings are followed by a chance to have filmmakers discuss their films with the audience.

What Are They Looking For?

No restrictions, all kinds of shorts will be considered.

How Do I Get In Touch?

[email protected]

9) Pocket Films

One of the biggest names in the world of Indian shorts, Pocket Films uploads a new short every day on their 2-million strong YouTube channel.

What Do They Offer?

They primarily distribute films but are also open to producing. If selected, the platforms asks for exclusive digital and mobile rights for which they offer a revenue share agreement where creators get 37.5% of all revenue generated, though, as most creators will tell you, YouTube revenue is hardly substantial. Content Manager Kalpesh Wadikar says if a film is already on YouTube it will still be considered and there’s no need to take it down, but the digital and monetization rights will be held by Pocket Films.

What Are They Looking For?

Wadikar says the platform is open to any and all kinds of shorts.

How Do I Get In Touch?

Films can be submitted on their website after creating an account. The site requires the full film to be uploaded for consideration and not just a link. Alternatively, you can contact [email protected] for shorts or  [email protected] to submit scripts.

10) Wishberry

The popular crowdfunding platform is increasingly becoming a go-to resource for short filmmakers looking to raise funds for their film. Wishberry has thus far been instrumental in the funding for acclaimed shorts like Wade, Kaala and Asmad.

What Do They Offer?

Like any crowdfunding campaign, Wishberry requires you to submit your proposal (details of the film and how much you need) on their website. If accepted, they provide support on the key three stages of a successful crowdfunding campaign – the pitch video, the rewards you offer and your campaign page. If your proposal is accepted, you have full creative control on the content and the film, they merely facilitate raising the financing.

A key advantage of crowdfunding is it helps you build an audience invested in your film before it’s even made. However, if you don’t raise the total funds for the campaign, the entire amount raised gets refunded to contributors. Apart from a 10% cut of the total amount raised for a successful campaign, Wishberry also takes a Rs 2500 setup fee for students, Rs 3500 for those looking to raise under 2 lakhs and Rs 10000 for those looking to raise more than two lakhs.

What Are They Looking For?

Marketing Manager Ketki Kalgutkar says most shorts tend to be seeking between Rs 50,000 and 7 lakhs but amounts above that can be considered depending on the content.

How Do I Get In Touch?

You can submit your proposal here https://www.wishberry.in/create-campaign

11) Filamnt

Filamnt is a platform specifically aimed at distributing shorts and documentaries.

What Do They Offer?

More than direct distribution, Filamnt provides representation to selected shorts and pitches on their behalf to streaming platforms with a revenue share model. All they require is a password-protected link to your film which must not be available on any public platform like YouTube. They offer both exclusive and non-exclusive deals depending on the platform they pitch your film to, so you may be free to have your film on other platforms.

What Are They Looking For?

No restrictions on the kinds of films they’re open to though founder Kunal Jhaveri says festival acclaim certainly helps.

How Do I Get In Touch?

You can submit a password protected link to [email protected]

12) Shamiana – The Shorts Company

Shamiana’s social media pages has them listed as one of India’s only and most dedicated short film clubs. Founder Cyrus Dastur says Shamiana conducts up to 20 short film screenings a month across 15 cities including Mumbai, Delhi and Bangalore.

What Do They Offer?

While most of the shorts they screen are international, Dastur says they’re always on the lookout for Indian shorts. Shamiana offers a mix of free and ticketed screenings, but in either case selected filmmakers are paid a license fee to have their film screened.

Depending on the content, the selected film may even be screened multiple times across cities.  All screenings are followed by live Q & A sessions with the audience.

What Are They Looking For?

Given they’re screenings are open to family audiences and young students, Dastur says they avoid films with graphic content, but beyond that are open to all kinds of stories and durations.

How Do I Get In Touch?

[email protected]

13) Royal Stag Barrel Select Large Short Films

Arguably the most well-established names in Indian shorts market, Large Short Films is known for producing shorts by leading filmmakers like Sujoy Ghosh, Anurag Kashyap and Neeraj Pandey.

What Do They Offer?

You can submit your short on their website to be considered to be Large Short Film’s Short Of The Week, wherein your short will be shared on their Facebook page which has over a million followers. For that, they don’t require exclusive rights as your film isn’t being acquired by them. They do also acquire shorts from aspiring directors for which you need to contact them directly, though no email address or contact details are provided on their website.

What Are They Looking For?

Large Short Films appears to be open to all genres and most of their films are shorter than 30 mins. From their existing films it appears that they prefer films with known faces.

How Do I Get In Touch?

Their website offers a contact form. You can submit your film for short of the week here https://www.largeshortfilms.com/contest

 

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